This is a review of Joseph Boot’s latest barnburner book, but don’t expect an unbiased assessment. Joe is a dear friend, and no doubt my affection and respect for him prejudice my assessment. In case you don’t know, Joe is founder and director of the Ezra Institute, a ministry of cultural theology and philosophy like our own Center for Cultural Leadership, a sister organization, in fact. Joe launched Ezra while pastoring Westminster Chapel-Toronto, which he planted, and now Ezra is expanding to the US and UK. Like CCL, it’s a think tank, but Ezra also hosts numerous residential training events. You can learn more about these programs here. I’ve spoken at these programs and I’m scheduled to speak at more in the future.
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Joe has always been a gifted speaker and writer, but his ministry has become even more refined and trenchant in recent years under additional intellectual influences. His magnum opus (thus far) is the much longer book The Mission of God, which is theologically indebted to historic Puritanism, presuppositional apologetics, theonomic ethics, and Christian worldview. In this latest book Joe has absorbed the more extensive and profound Reformational paradigm of thinkers like Abraham Kuyper, Herman Bavinck, and, in particular, Herman Dooyeweerd, without shedding his earlier theological and intellectual benefactors.
Ruler of Kings bulges with sharp insights, some of them ingenious, and it’s hard to summarize them, but five leading themes seem to pervade the book, which is a collection of loosely related but coherent essays and lectures, most of which have been previously published.